Little Women Reaches for your Heartstrings

Little Women Movie Review

Lillian Pitkin

 

Sacramento-born director, Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of the well-known novel, Little Women, written by Louisa May Alcott, did not fail to impress. This coming-of-age film reached for your heartstrings in every aspect; it featured life, death, love, struggle and the most important aspect yet, family.

Gerwig’s Little Women tells the tale of Jo March and her three sisters. The movie begins with Jo, a free-spirited, determined young woman, who is living in New York where she sells her writing to help support her family. She submits one of her works to a publisher, who asks her to re-write it, which she does.  The publisher then buys her writing, but this shows the audience how Jo is struggling to tell her story in her own way, and that she hasn’t quite figured it out yet.

Throughout the movie, the past and present are both presented. The movie jumps from the past to the present. In the past, which is pictured in light, warm tones, Jo and her sisters, Beth, Amy, and Meg are surviving throughout the American Civil War, where their father is away fighting. Their mother shows them all what it is like to be selfless and teaches them life skills, even in the face of poverty. In the present, which is pictured in cool, dark tones, shows how the family has separated: Amy is in Europe, Jo is in New York, Meg is married, and Beth is ill at home.

However, everything changes when Beth becomes terribly ill once again. Jo comes home to take care of Beth and they talk about the past. Sadly, Beth still meets her fate with death and Jo is heartbroken. The news of Beth’s sudden death brings the whole family together. This influences Jo to start writing again, and dedicates her time to writing her book, Little Women. By finishing her book, Jo ultimately finds her voice through her writing.

Overall, this movie portrays loss, struggle, love, and coming of age.  The movie depicts hope in times of doubt, and the character Jo shows how you can overcome almost anything. Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of Little Women is a movie that you would not regret watching, and hopefully, it inspires you as much as it inspired me.